You keep using that word. I don’t think it means what you think it means.

Voice of the Fuddled writes:

Once look at the crowd gathered at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in NYC will convince you…

Something big is happening.

For a long time now, we’ve been dealing with the status quo, desperately trying to bring attention to the many wrongs in the church that need changing, frustrated by the slow pace of progress. But now, things have changed.

How much have things changed? Well, just read the signs held by those in the crowd who gathered in support of Catholic sisters in NYC this weekend: “Pope, Stop Bullying the Nuns,” “Let Nuns Lead,” “Bishops Clean up Your Own House,” “Freedom of Speech,” “We are all Nuns,” “Investigate the Vatican, Not the Sisters or the Girl Scouts,” “Occupy Catholicism.” Clearly, a large majority
of Catholics are fed up with the Vatican and its recent actions. Those of us who have been working for change are not alone. The tides are turning!

The action against the nuns is just one in a long list of recent punitive actions and perplexing behavior shown by the hierarchy. The Vatican has “silenced” six Irish priests who were calling for reform there. The bishops in the U.S. even want to investigate a non-Catholic organization–the Girl Scouts–because they don’t like who they associate with. Is it any wonder so many Catholics feel the aim of the hierarchy is to drive away Catholics rather than welcome the faithful?

VOTF is working to change this, and we’re not going away! Help us remain steady and stronger than ever by lending you time, energy and ideas. And, if you have not already done so, please help us spread the word by making a donation to the VOTF Fiscal Year End Appeal today. On this, the last day of our Fiscal Year, your donation will go directly into our year end to help us close our funding gap and start the new year in a position of strength. Please donate online or mail your donation today to: VOTF, PO Box 423, Newton, MA 02464. And, for those who’ve already given, thank you so much!

With some 30,000 members across the US and internationally, Voice of the Faithful is making a major impact. The VOTF 10-year conference is planned for this coming September, and we have significant progress to report on initiatives that address a broad array of reforms from the Women’s Initiative to Financial Accountability. We are making every day count with your help.

You are the voice, and we are your instrument.

Um, I went to their Facebook page and found the biggest crowd shot I could find. If that’s large (and how many of those people are just pedestrians?) then I’m a Hottentot.

I did find stuff like this too:

Voice of the Faithful is a classic example of what happens when you are against something but have no idea what you are for. They started as a visceral reaction to the abuse scandal. But having no idea what the Church is or what it teaches beyond a few nostrums about niceness, secular social issues and Mass as family meal picked up in CCD 35 year ago, it almost instantly devolved into a clearing house for every leftist nostrum and bird-brained catchphrase about Liberte, Egalite et Sororite shallow progressives had picked up from wherever. Now it’s just aging geezer reliving all the stupid ideas that did so much to foster the chaos in the Church that led to the abuse crisis in the first place. Some people have lived 43 years since Woodstock. Others have just lived Woodstock 43 times.

Voice of the Faithful: Home of Woodstockholm Syndrome.

  • Confederate Papist

    Woodstockholm Syndrome!!

    Gotta love it. I am so stealing that.

    Great piece and commentary too, Mark!

  • Linda C.

    CNN yesterday ran a story on the protest, headlined, “The Vatican vs. U.S. Catholics”. Because apparently the LCWR = all U.S. Catholics.

    • Chris M

      It’s almost as if the media wants to and is intentionally framing things in a perniciously untrue manner to advance an agenda which attempts to undermine and ultimately destroy the Catholic Church.

      • Telemachus

        Simply not possible… I won’t believe it.

        • Dennis

          Come on, someone has to say it out of respect for the post’s title: Inconceivable!

  • john

    I know this may sound all conspiracy theory and all but it really does seem that someone is trying to establish a parallel to the Catholic Church in this country…a “state” sanctioned institution (with “state” meaning the ruling elite of government, big business/industry and media). And I think I am in agreement with Fr. Z that they want to build this around the magisterium of nuns (with nuns meaning any female religious who dissents from the real Magisterium…and suffers from Woodstockholm Syndrome).

    • Telemachus

      “Someone” = Satan. Yeah, I’m he is looking to do that, along with a lot of other destructive stuff.

      • Telemachus

        “I’m sure he”, I meant. I’m not Satan, at least not to most people.

  • john

    Looking at their Facebook page one image struck me as emblematic of the problem. One sign reads; Women Religious Heart (with the heart drawn) of the Church. These people seem to have forgotten who’s Heart beats for us in Heaven…They seem so caught up in the world that they have lost sight of Heaven.

  • Ted Seeber

    I’m pretty sure that if Christ returned today, these feminists would reject Him. After all, he’s male.

  • Sr Christine Ereiser, OSB

    Please say more about your comment: “Now it’s just aging geezer reliving all the stupid ideas that did so much to foster the chaos in the Church that led to the abuse crisis in the first place.” I don’t understand the ideas which fostered chaos which led to the abuse crisis.

    I am grateful for your work and your love of our Church.

    Sister Christine Ereiser, OSB

    • Ted Seeber

      The primary idea from “the Summer of Love” that fostered the abuse chaos is the concept that celibacy, and even chastity, can’t be practiced by men.

      And sure enough, MOST of the abuse happened when that generation came of age- between 1956 and 1986.

      The shame of the left wing should be the free sex movement, that did so much destruction to our culture that *even Catholic Priests* were affected. I can’t understand why people still are sexually libertine today, after two generations of latchkey kids, no-fault divorce, one night stands, AIDS, and yes, child sex abuse by authority figures both inside the Catholic Church and inside every institution that serves children.

      Isn’t it clear yet that sexual freedom is as much of a failure on the left as the freedom to commit usury on the right?

      • Mark Shea

        Woodstock was ’69. The Summer of Love was ’67. And yes, I am old, thankyouverymuch.

        • Ted Seeber

          The attitude, however, was the same: rebellion against authority and rules.

  • chris

    “Some people have lived 43 years since Woodstock. Others have just lived Woodstock 43 times.”

    A beautiful epigram, which captures the situation at VotF beautifully.

  • Andrew

    Context folks:
    “With some 30,000 members across the US and internationally, Voice of the Faithful is making a major impact:

    [a] The demonstration was in NYC. Hardly a bastion of orthodoxy. Think Corinth on a bad day.
    [b] 30k out of 1 billion Catholics. I hope their armies don’t overwhelm us.

    It will take some time but this too will pass. People in my (30s-40s) age group bifurcate into [a] pretty solid, albeit imperfect Catholics [b] Apathetic, don’t bother anymore Catholics. The whole infantile boomer rage-against-authority spirit just isn’t in our veins. We’re too busy being grown-ups with little interest in boomer politics and angst.

    • Steven Dunn

      As a 28 year old Catholic, I just want my parents’ generation of dissident hippie Catholics to SHUT UP ALREADY. I swear they’ll still be ranting about their pet issues at their own wakes.

  • Ted Seeber

    The very definition of Woodstockholm Syndrome to me came in a letter from my Representative recently, where she claimed to be a feminist after voting against bills that would have protected baby girl’s right to be born and reigned in the Obamacare attempt to poison women because pregnancy is now a disease.

  • LaVallette

    I count 10 protesters. VOTF doth speak for the 99% after all.

    From their site: “The election for four new members to VOTF’s Board of Trustees has been completed. Two hundred fifty-three members voted in this election. “. Now that is what I call a massive turnout.

  • Vincent

    I came upon this commentary while searching for photos. I should not be so proud of being clever if I were you. Indeed, I fail to see why you take such pleasure in mischaracterizing VOTF–especially with regards to their intelligence–theological and otherwise. There are a couple of things you cannot truthfully deny about members of VOTF. First, they are fellow Catholics, and second, the love the church just as you do. They may not love the things you do, they may be critical of this or that aspect of the church, but they love the church and endeavor to follow the gospel message of Jesus Christ. Assuming you are correct in your views, and VOTF members are seriously misguided, would the gospel mandate be ridicule and condemnation? This kind of derisive discourse has already brought American politics into the gutter. Do you really think it appropriate for American Catholicism as well?

    I’ll be moving on now, doubt I’ll ever come back. I’ll be looking for Catholic intellectual discourse that seeks solutions to church unity and fellowship amongst Catholics.